Russell Simmons and Snoop Dogg team up to make NFT for hip hop pioneers

Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons and rapper Snoop Dogg have curated an NFT to help benefit hip-hop’s founding artists.

Speaking to HipHopDX, Simmons said the project, Masterminds of Hip Hop: An Exclusive NFT Collection, would benefit those artists who pioneered the genre but who didn’t get the financial rewards at the time.

“The idea is something I’ve had for the last couple years,” Simmons told the publication. “Then over the last two months, this feeling that we should do something to compensate and to give credit to the original founding fathers of Hip Hop intensified. I felt more and more increasingly compelled to do something.”


He continued, saying the aim of the project is to “make sure I draw attention to the founding fathers. So now that I’ve started, I have to do a documentary, a book and start to really make sure these NFTs sell and these guys make the money.

“Some…don’t even have bank accounts and we wouldn’t even be here without them. We’re standing on the shoulders of people who are struggling in many cases. This is why I wanted to do it.”

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Snoop Dogg. CREDIT: Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images

Speaking about Snoop Dogg’s involvement, Simmons continued: ““He’s helping to curate. So I got him involved early because I’m in business with Snoop on a number of things. And also, he cares about those guys. When he hears a story about a founding father of Hip Hop, he gets quiet and listens. He’s a heartfelt person who cares.

“A lot of artists when they’re really young, sometimes they don’t care, and when they get older, most of the time they still don’t care. But Snoop was very, very in tune with giving back and that’s why he got involved.

“He’s going to do an NFT and everything, but it’s not about what he does, it’s his curation of it and his adding credibility to it that I’m incredibly grateful for.”


Outside of his business ventures, Snoop made headlines earlier this month for giving some excellent commentary for the Equestrian event at the Tokyo Olympics.

It was also reported earlier this year that Snoop is working on an anthology series about his life and career.